Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I am tired today.

Not just run-of-the-mill tired, but bone tired, stone-cold tired. Do you know what I mean? I am sure you do. I went to the gym this morning to get a little exercise and decided I couldn't face another day on the treadmill with nothing to distract me. So I went to a class called Body Sculpting. It should have been called Body Destruction 101. Seriously. I bared lived through it.

I don't think of myself as a wimpy person. In fact, I think I am rather strong. I have some decent cardio fitness as well, thanks to a treadmill that can show DVDs--hence my ability to do 5k races in less than 30 minutes. Not an Ironman (ironperson?), but not a slouch either.

I think my opinion was decidedly changed today.

Shoulders are not meant to be worked out. Moderate workouts on quads are acceptable as long as it doesn't include endless sets of lunges of many varieties.

I am humbled. I am a wimp. The lady that taught the class didn't look like she was in such great shape, but man, she kicked my trash from here to Jupiter (and back). I am not sure if I have it in me to go again.

I AM a wimp, but at least I am a self-aware wimp. That's important, right?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Keeping track

I keep track of all sorts of things. I love to make lists; I love schedules and routines. I think that it is a good thing.

Except in one way.

I keep track of stuff in my marriage. Like when I am working and he's watching TV. After a lot of resentment and acting like a bear, we actually communicated. I didn't want to hear it, but I got schooled where "tracking" is concerned. He's right. It is like forgiveness--the only one hurt is the one harboring the ill feelings. I want my husband to be able to read my mind (or at least hear the "red alert" alarm that goes off when I need his help but am too overwhelmed to ask for it), but that is NEVER going to happen. So if I am stewing while he is oblivious, who is hurting? Duh. That is not to say that I am suddenly going to assume the "rug" position. It is just a matter of the mind. I don't need to keep track. Jesus doesn't keep track (thank goodness!). He just keeps giving and is hopeful that we will receive it with joy and bless others.

If any of you have any great ideas of conquering tracking, let me know. I really need all the help I can get.

But lest you should think I am bagging on myself, I'm not. I am patting myself on the back that I see my weakness and now am empowered to deal with it and change. Cool!

P.S. again: I am still working on the pics. Any ideas about how to make that part easier too?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

I love finding free stuff on the internet

So, here's the thing. Math facts are hard for one of our amazing kids. He just struggles with the rote memorization of it. I've worried over it, nagged him, looked for ways to help him, but to no avail. When I was in grade school, I just memorized it. No questions asked. I just did what was asked of me, without complaining. Truth is, I actually liked it. I like predictability. I liked that someone could ask me some math fact, and I could pull it out of my memory--lightning fast. That doesn't seem to be the case with the younger generation. I worry about my boy not knowing his math facts, yet almost all of his teachers don't share my worry. He seems to be one of the more prepared students when it comes to math. Not to bash my boy, but that is truly scary. I don't want him to be mediocre, I want him to have the skills to be able to make change, figure out word problems in his head, without a calculator. yes, I know that every computer has a calculator built in. But did you know that we aren't always tethered to a computer? That we actually exist (or maybe even thrive) in a world apart from our computers. I want my kids to be able to figure things out all by their lonesomes. Is that asking too much? Sometimes I think I may be.

Well, I just had a conversation about just buckling down and memorizing the facts. I think it is important to have those things under one's educational belt. So I am motivated. And grateful for the internet because I found this. Basically, this is a free site dedicated to helping people get their math facts memorized. Addition, subtraction, multiplication, division. You name it, they will train you. Lovin' it! It must be the "need for order" personality within me that thrills to the idea that in only 3 five-minute sessions a day, you can train yourself to learn these facts. I even did a "workout" with the times tables. And yes, I still got it, baby!

So, check it out. There is all sorts of great stuff on this site. And, as always, if you have found something that has really worked for helping your kids with math, I would LOVE to hear about it!

P.S. savannah, thanks for the reminder that I need to post pictures. You are a great photo-cop!

P.P.S. I will try REALLY hard to get some pictures up tomorrow all about the kids and their cousins and the amazing snow fort they built this afternoon. Thanks for keeping me in line, girl!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Big girl panties

And no, I am not the big girl (although...)

I was feeling a little crazy this morning, and Larry took off Sarah's diaper and never put it back on (it was wet, but from the outside--a glass of spilled water). Put it all together and you have a two-year-old in big girl panties.

She has already sat on the potty twice this morning, but between visits she stood outside of the bathroom in which Larry was showering and peed. On the carpet. 5 feet from the toilet. I know I shouldn't be annoyed, but...pee on the carpet? EEEEUWWWWW! Obviously, I haven't done potty training in a while. I am hoping to be on top of things, but we'll see...

Wish us luck (and helpful bladders)!

Saturday, February 14, 2009


Larry and I saw a movie last night that we really enjoyed. I didn't know what to expect from it, but I ended up liking it. It is a story about a couple's marriage on the rocks, and what they do to save it. It is about selfishness and pride within relationships, sin and addiction, and the saving power of Jesus Christ. I thought that it was a bit heavy-handed where the gospel was concerned, but that is just aesthetics. I totally agree with the message, I just don't always enjoy being hit over the head with it. Having said that, I hope it won't deter anyone from seeing it. There is so much good in this movie. It touches on so many timely truths about saving families and how God really is willing AND ABLE to help us to overcome the world in our relationships with the ones who matter the most.

I also thought its treatment of pornography to be very refreshing. We live in a world that doesn't seem to condemn the viewing of pornography as an evil, destructive force. Only in church addresses and magazines have I felt like people are speaking out about how it can destroy people, and therefore, families. I was happy to see that others are also speaking out about this corruption in our time, in a way that makes it clear that it is NOT okay, normal, or acceptable behavior. AMEN and AMEN. I also am very glad to see an example of people taking responsibility for their actions, realizing that no one is going to change them but themselves.

Enough on that, the film is called Fireproof. I hope you will see it--there is much to be gained.

Can I just say that I love my husband? Money is tight, yet he bought me tulips (and roses). I LOVE tulips. They are my all-time favorite flower. Absolutely. Hands down. Even my kids know that I love tulips. Roses are nice, too, but nothing touches my heart like a tulip.

It is the little things that make a woman feel special. Not to sound corny, but I think coming down in the morning to clean dishes in the dishwasher (that I didn't load or start) is one of the most romantic things around. I know, I know, I am easy to please. Thank goodness, I think.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The mother ship has landed

Well, we are here in Ogden. We have already spied out the temple, the train museum, Farr Better Ice Cream, the Treehouse Museum, and so much more. We have figured out that it is only 1/2 mile to one of the Ogden River Parkway entrances--which will be AWESOME come spring for bike riding, running, etc. We also have a pool in our area that we can go to EVERY DAY in the summer. Can you guess what our summer will look like? Totally cool! (I hope, anyway--Utah summers are way too hot for my "native" California blood (I had to put native in quotes because I was actually born in Idaho).

Can I say something about moving? Well, maybe I shouldn't. I was taught that if you don't have something nice to say, you shouldn't say anything at all. I guess that sums it up. I do have one good thing though. Having a clean slate in a neighborhood is kind of nice. That way you can introduce yourselves to everyone and not have any awkward "just waving hi" relationships. And you get to be a 100% home and visiting teacher all over again. And everyone thinks your kids are great because they were well-behaved once in Primary. Life's little pleasures, right?

William's teacher reminds me of my mother-in-law. I think that has really helped him get settled quickly. He just loves Grandma Johnson. The first day I picked him up, Mrs. Ward said he was "EXCELLENT!" Gotta love that! He got in the car and said, "They don't give marks at this school!" (He had some behavior issues in his last class, and when he misbehaved, he got marks.) Everyday he comes home saying that he wasn't mean to anyone in class. It will certainly be a red-letter day when he comes home saying that he was nice to all his friends. We'll get there!

Hadland has had a little harder time making friends this time. Poor guy. He has never completed two years at the same school. This makes school #5 for him in the five years he has been in school. He is a trooper, though. Maybe we'll stick around a little longer this time. Who knows? We don't want to mess up his "winning" streak, do we? :) On a happy note, we got his class list to do valentine's, and there was a Kaileb Brandley in his class. I pounced on that and wondered if he was related to Scott (bro-in-law). He is, and I think it may be an opportunity to make a friend. Hip, hip, hooray. Thank goodness for Scott's huge extended family! We love you, Brandleys!!!

Lauren is still kind of wondering what happened to school for her. I told her that I would do school with her, but she is still waiting. I'd love to get some sort of song that helps learn letter sounds. William sang one in his preschool, but I don't remember it. Any help would be greatly appreciated! She and Sarah are sharing a room, and it is hilarious (and sometimes really annoying) to hear how long they goof around before going to sleep. I have to remind myself that some of my best memories are going to sleep with Laurel (quoting "Jabberwocky" and singing the Lawrence Welk and Donny and Marie show themes).

I think this move has been hardest on Sarah. She really missed her mom. Although I was always in sight, I was never truly available. I finally got the message when she kept saying "hold me, stand up." She didn't want to stay out of the action, she wanted to be right in the middle of the action and seeing it from my perspective. Smart girl, eh? She's getting more used to getting my attention (good for me, too), and we are slowing getting back in to a pattern where I can still be there for her and keep working and settling in. We'll get there, I just know it!

Well, Larry is lovin' life in his nice office down in the basement. I am willing to give up a playroom so that he can be working and not in the middle of all of our lives. He seems to be getting a lot done (or so he says), and that is a good thing!

I am slowly finding a place for everything and everything in its place. I love to be organized, and moving is an opportunity to have a fresh start! I am trying not to clutter up our new nest too much, and so far I've been reasonably successful. It is a tight squeeze, but I am working to make our new digs a home! We've been to our new ward, and I am excited to get to know some new friends. They even have a ward choir! And they sound pretty decent! We'll see what sort of mischief we can get ourselves into...